I read a lot of theories about black holes and cant help but wonder if they are "holes" at all. What if the center of a black hole is just an element that is created by the immense pressure at the time of the supernova? An element so dense would not be able to be seen and would appear as a black spot or hole due to the fact it even pulls in light. All the matter pulled into it is crushed into the new element and again, because it is so dense that light cannot escape its gravitational pull we cannot see this process.

I have not found this type of question answered or even really asked which makes me think I'm overlooking something but I wanted to throw it at the wall and see what other opinions or answers I could find.

  • $\begingroup$ This isn't enough for an answer, but Wikipedia credits the first usage to Ann Ewing. John Wheeler is also mentioned there; the source for the first part can be found here. $\endgroup$ – HDE 226868 Nov 24 '14 at 23:20
  • $\begingroup$ "An element so dense would not be able to be seen and would appear as a black spot or hole due to the fact it even pulls in light." Think carefully about the implication of that with regards to the (local) invariance of the speed of light. $\endgroup$ – Alfred Centauri Nov 25 '14 at 0:50
  • $\begingroup$ We have also other terms for "black-things". For example blackrings which occur in higher dimensional general relativity (or string theory). You can check this: arxiv.org/abs/hep-th/0608012v2 $\endgroup$ – MEDVIS Nov 25 '14 at 5:16

You're focusing too much on the stuff at the center of the hole.

The thing about general relativity is that lots of mass in any form will alter the space and time around it. If you bend things enough, the direction we used to unambiguously call "forward in time" bends into "toward the singularity at the 'center' of the black hole." So there is a region -- an extended region, not just a small point -- where one can no more avoid falling into the singularity than you or I could avoid progressing forward in time.

The term "hole" is somewhat apt for this region, since once you are inside you cannot pull yourself out by any means.

And from the perspective of anyone outside a black hole, this is in fact all it is. The nature of the matter at the "center" is of no consequence and isn't observable even in principle. The phenomenon of a black hole is really defined and fully characterized by this inescapable "hole-ness," not by the nature of whatever may be inside.


Because the gravitational field is so strong, everything (ie all matter and light), if it gets close enough, "falls" into them, just like a hole.


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